Friday, December 21, 2007


I finished my pair of Dashing! I cannot model both in a picture, I have not mastered taking a picture with my nose, so you will just have to trust me on this one:


The next pair I make will have a few modifications. I will either add another cable, or make it a bit shorter between the third cable and the thumb. I love the yarn, it's full of alpaca goodness.

In my one week of break so far, I have finished two knitting projects (Dashing and a basic scarf for my niece) and have read two books (Elantris by Brandon Sanderson, and something by R.A. Salvatore). I love Christmas break. Also made some cookies for the family:


They are yummy, and ridiculously unhealthy. In addition to the cookies, I made some Carolina Delights, Peppermint Bark, and Brownies.

AND! My friend Anne made me a scarf! I've been wearing it all day today:


This, on top of getting my grades, has made this a very good week. I originally confused my midterm grades with my final grades, but I have everything straight now, and I made all A's. I'm not really sure how I managed that in one of the classes, except that the professor took pity on my poor tired mind.

Well, I restarted the Pirate Mittens, and will be starting Black Forest Braided Gloves next week. I'm taking a few projects to my parents because it is nearly impossible to get on the internet there, and when I do get on, I don't like to stay on because it ties up my brother's phone line. I'll have my cell phone with me, but no promises on answering. I don't like talking on the phone much, and I'll be pretty busy. I will be out of town until Saturday, the 30th, immersed in Christmas stuff, video games, books, and knitting.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


I am in love with this designer's work:


and I even like a pink one:

There is a knitting-related one that is pretty cool too:

You can specify colors for it. NEAT.

I would love to learn how to do something like that. I can imagine working in a basement with a work bench and little tools and a pair of glasses with a magnifier on one eye. And Mozart playing the background.

I have an exam tomorrow evening. I'm not too worried about it. I'm going to an all-day study session, so I should have everything under control by exam time. I also have a project that she is letting us turn in by Monday. I'm going to try and finish by Saturday though.

I am, however, going to the knitting store on Friday for celebration. I am going to start two new projects to work on during the next round of knitting classes. First, the Braided Fingerless Gloves for myself. Second, a pair of socks. I'm not sure how I feel about knitted socks. I don't know that I would ever wear them. Also, if the yarn and supplies from those two are not too expensive, I am going to pick up some supplies for a pair of Dashing. I know it says it is for a guy, but with a different color yarn it would work for me. The Pirate Mittens might be headed the way of the frog pond. I might have to restart them on different size needles because they are looking a little small.

I'm trying to control my yarn buying, which is why I haven't bought any for a month, working with what I've got, but I have all Christmas Break to knit. Huzzah! And maybe read a good book. I just absorbed Captain's Fury by Jim Butcher when I should have been doing homework. Good stuff.

For a little extra cash I might start substituting. It's not my dream job, but it is a lot more flexible than your average job, and it pays $90 a day. Just need to get a TB test and send a copy of my transcript over to the county school system.

I've got plenty of books to read over the break, but I wouldn't mind some TV or movie recommendations.

Cross your fingers with me that there will be no ice storm tomorrow. I do not want to drive home on 395 and 95 in the middle of an ice storm. People go a little crazy when there is fog here. Or a gnat hits their windshield.


Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Not technically procrastinating...

I finished a paper. Fifteen pages of analysis, two pages of works cited, one page of footnotes, and some parts to a Mustang GT. It still needs some heavy revision, but I'm at the point that I feel comfortable that I can turn it in by Thursday. I did have some things cheer me up over the weekend during the writing process, but before I explain those...

Look, I made a hat!

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Pretty simple pattern. Had to switch to dpns at the end although the pattern didn't call for it. Made it for a friend's teenage daughter, hence the smallness. I'd model it...but I've got a big head. I admit it.

Now, as for the things that cheered me up over the weekend. First, I stayed late on Wednesday night to help a man with his paper. We went over almost all of it and even though the class let out an hour early, we actually ended up staying past the actual time class was supposed to end. I enjoyed the work though. Anyway, the next day we have a class together and he walks in with a surprise for me. It's a book! Richard the Third by Paul Kendall. (Both of our papers are on the play). I love these sort of historical biographies. This one may even beat Cicero by Anthony Everitt in coolness. Awesome. Two days later, I get a book on knitting basics in the mail by Elizabeth Zimmerman. Now I know my amazon ordering is a bit extreme, but I usually just don't forget ordering something. I looked at the receipt and it turns out a friend of mine sent it to me as a gift! Huzzah for good friends.

The same friend and I participated in the swap I mentioned a few posts ago. I sent him a scarf and several sundries (including school supplies because I am that geeky). He turned around and sent out a box that completely trumped mine (warning, picture heavy) after his trip to Oahu:

First a keychain with my name in Hawaiian. And yes, that is a Mighty Mouse keychain--I've had it since high school and I love it:

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Other side:

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The next picture is of two items. A mug that will soon be seeing a lot of chai tea and a keychain with the Dole Bear. I've named her Lao.

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Next, a postcard printed on a rare Hawaiian wood called Koa, sitting on top of a bus schedule/map going from Woodbridge to Awesometown:

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Lao wanted in on all of the pictures.

And finally, the thing that kept me laughing for the next half hour: A miniature mechanical daschund that I have named Clarence.

In his box:

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Getting used to his surroundings:

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Oh! He's gotten so excited he can't stop barking and wagging his tail!

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Those books and this box kept me going this weekend. I wouldn't have survived that paper otherwise. I hope Clarence will get me through the next paper.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Just over the horizon

Haven't been in a talkative mood recently, and I'm still not really in one. But here is the progress I have made on the pirate mittens. I won't really be able to work on them more until the weekend. They are also seeming a bit small. The person I'm making them for has smaller hands than me, but I have this nightmare that I will give these to her and they won't fit. Worry about that later. Pictures now!

Top side:

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Palm side:

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I apologize for the poor quality of the lighting, but I really didn't feel like fiddling. How freaking cool are the skull and crossbones though? I can't believe I made that. There are some mistakes, but I love the mitten anyway.

Saturday, November 24, 2007


Just pictures of some work I've done today. The Pirate Mitten pattern is by helloyarn and will eventually be a gift for my friend Anne.

Front side:

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Back side:

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Friday, November 16, 2007

The Next Month

Today I went to the bookstore. I had a coupon for 30% off a book, so I was hoping to find something something fun to read. Maybe The Green Rider by Britain. It looked like a good fantasy book/series that I could get into. I went to one of those big chain bookstores. While looking through the shelves, I began to wonder, did anyone teach these people the alphabet? Garrison Keiller right by Walt Whitman? But, but the sign says alphabetical by author! The Craft section is a joke. Knitting books are always mixed up, no matter the bookstore because of the variety of shapes and bindings, so I understand a little bit of confusion. But crochet and quilting mixed in with the knitting books? The reference books are just as much of a joke. It's so disappointing. In a time when I am so fed up with reading for school, almost to the point that I don't want to read at all, the bookstore is supposed to be a haven, relaxing, not frustrating. This is the problem of chain stores I guess.

I am tired. I have had bronchitis for the past week and I'm just now feeling better. The weight of a three-class graduate semester in English just sorta fell all at once on my head. Just thinking about the two research papers I need to write for Shakespeare and Roth makes me panic. My Syntax project looks promising. We analyze the clauses from some text out of any book of our choosing. I like that kind of work. But I'm still freaking out over those papers.

Wednesday night I went to see As You Like It at the Folger in DC. It was my first time seeing a Shakespearean play staged. I liked the director's interpretation, even if the woman playing Rosalind was a little flat.

I have two very tall stacks of library books in my room toppling over currently.

Haven't done a lot of knitting recently, not much time.

Sunday, November 11, 2007


I have a cold, and it is giving me the biggest sinus headache, making it difficult to read. I just thought all (two) of you should know.

Friday, November 9, 2007


I lost my bag. I carried some knitting, books, and my lunch around in it. And I just left it in the dining hall. A guard on the campus took me into two locked buildings to help me look for it, and I couldn't. It's just...the money wasted by losing that bag. It might still turn up in Lost and Found I guess.

Idiot me.

Anyway, I didn't end up leaving campus until after 10pm, went to bed later. Am just uber tired in general.

On the knitting side of things, no pictures today, but I have accomplished a lot. First mitten is done sans seaming up the side. Will start the next on Monday. I also learned a new stitch, the same one from My so called Scarf. Looks pretty good.

All of a sudden, I'm not in the mood to write more....

Saturday, November 3, 2007

The homework beast attacks again

Two 17-20 page research papers due in one month. One English Syntax Project and Final Exam due in one month. Regular homework in addition to aforementioned. One young lady slowly losing her sanity.

At least I have cookies. Anne sent me cookies, and they were delicious. Please note the "were." I would have taken a picture of them, but somehow, on the journey to get my camera, the cookies disappeared. Into my belly. Hopefully I can return something to her within the next two months.

Homework has seriously hindered my knitting time, but nonetheless, I have pictures for you:

Progress on the mittens thus far. Basically I make the entire mitten in one go, fold it over, and seam up the sides. I'm working on the thumb right now. Only I haven't really worked on it for about two weeks because I've been so busy.

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I also made some of my first attempts at cabling, and I have to say, I want to put cables in EVERYTHING now Sorry for the poor quality of the images, but I just cannnot take good pictures.

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And a close up of the cables (the underside looks exactly the same):

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The scarf pattern is Palindrome by Kristin Bellehumeur, and the mitten pattern is from a pamphlet by Marion Graham.

Today I hope to do a few more inches on the Palindrome scarf, finish the thumb on the mittens, read the very last bit of American Pastoral for my Philip Roth class, read Chapter 8 and 9 in my English Syntax book, and work through some of my Shakespeare class' Annotated Bibliography and Project Proposal. If I get this work done today, I can work on my research projects tomorrow and Monday. I also have knitting class on Monday, so I need to finish the mitten thumb by then.

Last night I watched Critters with my roommate last night. I'm not sure how many of you know about this little gem, but it is quintessential bad 80s horror comedy. Well, the day is already half gone, and I need to get started on my work. I can't wait until the end of this semester..

Oh, also, I updated my amazon wishlist on the very off-chance anyone decides to get me something from it. Just have it list by priority and you will see what my little heart desires most.

Saturday, October 27, 2007


Little bit under the weather today, but I can't let it affect me. Too much homework to do. The week did not go as well as I would have liked, but it ended well. I got an A on my English Syntax midterm. I missed 3 and a half points. Two of those points I just made stupid mistakes. D'oh. I'm not quite as optimistic as my grades in my Shakespeare class, and have no idea in my Roth class.

I picked something up this swap/gift thing from Anne over on my livejournal:

For the first five people that reply to me and re-post this challenge - I will send you something that I think rocks.
It might be something I've made or something that makes me think of you or something else that is awesome.Whatever it is, I promise that I will get it to you in 365 days or less.
The only thing you need to do in order to participate is to be one of the first five to reply to this, AND post this very same thing on YOUR livejournal - cause it's fun to give people stuff.

1. Anne
2. Lauren
3. Scott

Well, I guess I don't really have enough friends to do five, but it just means I can spend that much more time on the three. I have ideas fo everyone, and am happy that I have a full year to get it all together.

Sigh, the dog woke me up whining at 6:30, and now he's gone to sleep.

Gratuitous roommate's dog photo just for fun:

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He's enjoying my bed.


Saturday, October 20, 2007

Yarn Love

I haven't posted in a little while, mainly because of class. I had a midterm on Thursday in Syntax. I studied out the yang, but I spazzed out on the exam day. I'll hold my pessimism in until I actually get the grade. Here's to hoping.

Anyway, I have celebrated the end of the bad week with yarn. Hoorah yarn! I don't have pictures, but I have worked three inches on my first mitten (the cuff) and hopefully will have a lot more done by next time (enough to post pictures). Until then, I have some pictures of yarn projects.

First, some yarn that I have been looking all over for and didn't want to get off the internet because of shipping, I finally found at Old Town Needle:

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Isn't it pretty?? It will eventually be a hat for myself. Second, a WIP and a FO. The FO is a scarf for my mom for Christmas (the pinkish one). I'm quite proud of it. The brown WIP is the one I am still making for my friend. It's going irritatingly slow, and the scarf keeps curling. I'll wash it when I finish, and that should fix the curling...if I can finish it!

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And for my next project, a scarf for myself, in the round:

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The yarn is navy and made from alpaca and wool. It's super soft.

I still have homework to do, and I'll be visiting my mom tomorrow, so I won't have a lot of homework time then. I need to hurry up, but I'm lacking motivation. Surprise, surprise. Among the things I need to do: 1) Think up a topic for my final research paper in Shakespeare, 2) Write a response to Richard III, 3) Read a long chapter in my Syntax book, 4) Complete (and start...ahem) a project for Syntax, 5) And figure out my schedule for next semester.

I know I will definitely be taking Transformation of Literary Study and Visions of Freedom (Modern Lit), but I'm against taking Chaucer. I don't think I'd do very well in the class. And although it has been suggested, and I'd love to do it, I don't think I have the research base to do an Independent Study at this level. Ah well, I hope to get everything but the project done tonight so I can actually enjoy tomorrow without stressing over homework.

It's lonely out here.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Procrastinating Again

I need to read Much Ado About Nothing, but I'm lacking motivation. I'm sleepy and am considering the ramifications of getting a second job. I could really use the money. I just used a little bit from my savings to buy a textbook on rhetoric to help with my master's thesis and hopefully (eventually) getting into a PhD program. I'd only be able to realistically work on the weekends with the exception of holiday breaks. I really just miss working, being on my feet and helping people. I miss the activity.

Did I mention I was sleepy?

Classes are going well, I'm enjoying them, just a lot to do and not enough motivation. On the plus side, when I procrastinate, I typically am semi-productive. I took the trash out and cleaned up the kitchen.

As you can see, I've added my wishlist to the sidebar, and some google links. Most of the items on the wishlist are books because that's really what I enjoy most. The google links is for moneys. Click and support me! Or not, it won't hurt my feelings.

Not a lot anyway.

Well, I think I am going to apply to Borders again and hopefully score some holiday work. I'm trying to avoid going back to a 4am shift at Target, even though I had some good times there. I'm starting to enjoy sleeping semi-normal hours. You understand.

No knitting news today. I'm still working on the brown scarf for my friend. It's going slow, it's Homespun, and it keeps splitting, dagnabbit.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

WIP, FO, and something just for giggles

The week from hell is over. Ah, sweet relief. Classes do not start again until Wednesday, so I have an extra day to recuperate and recover some of those wayward brain cells. In the meantime, I did a little crochet hat, just to get back into the feel of it, and I have to say, I'm pretty darn proud of it. The hat is from Crochet Me, the pattern called, It's not easy being a green hat.

Here it is early in the afternoon yesterday:

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And then later in the evening, after I added the second color:

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And the final product:

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I am going to make a second one, and I think I will adjust the pattern a little. I already did at the end of the pattern, mainly because I couldn't figure out how to do a "bfsc." I get the concept, but it just didn't look right when I tried it. On the next hat, I probably won't knit the two colors together in the middle of the hat either.

I haven't forgotten my knitting, and here is a picture of the Homespun scarf I am working on for a friend:

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And finally, a picture just for fun. My friend Lauren sent me a very nice Halloween gift, and I'm trying to think of something to send back to her equally enjoyable. Ideas (Lauren - if you have anything in mind, it would be a good time to post)?

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Well, I still have homework to do, and some tacos to make. And maybe a nap. I'd love a nap.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Shakespeare has my souul

In the past week, I have had more experience working with Macbeth and Othello than I care to admit. I wrote a paper on guilt and catharsis in Macbeth, and in seven hours, will be doing a 20 minute presentation on Transformation and Comedy in Othello.

I'm just a little nervous.

I've been insanely busy over the past week. I had to read Operation Shylock over the weekend, and it is a long and intense book. Ridiculously difficult, in fact. Class was cancelled this week though, so I have some more time to figure it out, and reread parts. Fall Break is next week, so I won't have the class then either. Only missing one class, though.

Anyway, I made a dishcloth from this pattern. It was fun to make, and not difficult. Shows how much of a Harry Potter nerd I am:

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First week of knitting classes went well. I learned a better way of casting on, and found out we will be making mittens in the class as out major project, which is exciting. Otherwise, I knew how to knit and purl, I just need to retrain how I hold the yarn. I have a feeling to really learn everything that I posted on the list, I'm going to need to take the set of classes a few times. I don't want it to take years, but I have a feeling that is what it is going to take.


Have I mentioned how nervous I am about this presentation? I hate speaking in front of people. Narf, guess I'll have to get over it. I'll let you know how it goes.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Coming Soon

Coming soon to a blog near you!


I'm too busy to write anything more than a few sentences right now, but updates are coming within the next few days.

Plus, drum roll please, a picture of a dishcloth knitted from this pattern!

Egads! Contain your excitement people, at least for the moment.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


I should be writing my paper. I really should. Somehow, in all the panic of the weekend, I forgot I had a seven page paper due tomorrow. How does one forget to write an entire paper? I've started it. Three quarters of a page done. I keep looking at knitting patterns instead of researching the problems of genre in Shakespeare.

To be fair, some of the knitting patterns are pretty cool. I think maybe sleep deprivation, and a very poor diet (I'm eating, don't's just all the bad stuff) have made me a little loopy. I'm angry that I had to park in the Mt. Olivet parking lot again today, that when I got to the parking lot on campus, everyone driving a car decided to act like a complete moron.

EDIT. I removed some of what I posted earlier...because I was in a bad mood when I wrote that.

Hopefully I can get a ride to my car tonight, else I won't be getting home till 11pm or later because the shuttle only runs on half hour intervals, and when I'm getting out of class, it is just leaving campus. I just want to start my knitting class right now so I can have something in the week to look forward to besides homework or picking up my needles.

I barely even have the time for knitting, and that just annoys the hell out of me. I am mastering knitting and reading at the same time, but I can only do that with books I don't have to hold open, of which I have few for class. Still haven't found that happy place between school and life, and school keeps interrupting my damn zen.

I'm not going to break down or anything, I'm just worried about burning out at the end of this year. Maybe next semester or year I will find a job to hold down and take one less class per semester. This may seem like it might exasperate the problem, but having money rarely hurts me. Except for that one time.

Someone is paying me to knit them a scarf. It will be a gift for her mother, which means I'm going to have to do a fantastic job. Maybe I'll get some return business from it?

Enough procrastinating, time to finish my paper.

Friday, September 21, 2007


Yesterday was horrible. I don't really want to go into the specifics, but let's just say it involved my paycheck (and the lack of one). In the end, it is my fault, I made a mistake, and now I'm going to have to go through a lot of annoying stuff to get it fixed.

Over the next week and a half, you probably will not hear much from me. I have a pretty big paper, and a 20 minute presentation to prepare for in just one class. There are several hundred pages of reading in the other classes. I'm also pretty sure there is a midterm coming up in Syntax. Weee, sentence trees.

Also, my excitement about only having to see one performance live for Shakespeare fizzled out this week. The teacher announced in class she would really like us to see two. Sigh. I think everything seems a little bit worse this week because of yesterday. I'm going home on Saturday this weekend, and I hope I can relax a little bit.

I've decided I'm going to buy the Anemoi Mitten pattern, even though I'm not at the skill level to make it yet. I hope I will be sometime soon, I just want to have the pattern right now in case she decides to take down her website or her patterns.

She has some really fantastic patterns, and I'm going to hold this skill level up as my goal.

Need to start on some homework now, because I will lose Saturday for homework and I can't do work there.


Wednesday, September 19, 2007


Today I saw a sticker on the window of an orange Mustang, and it said:

This vehicle is protected by a passive alarm system!

So I was thinking, should that say, "You are being warned!" Because if an orange Mustsang is going to start bandying bad grammar all about, I want to be duly notified. Not that passive voice is bad (and it really shouldn't be used as a weapon, Ford), but I can only listen to so much of it in one sentence before cringing.

Currently I am in the office I share at Marymount, shirking my responsibilites as a dutiful student, and postponing the inevitable research of the day. On the plus side, the wireless on my shiny laptop is so good, that I am picking it up from another building.


I haven't been sleeping very well recently, and I really wish that this was Thursday, and the end of the week, and that this weekend wasn't going to be so busy. It is though, and I doubt I will actually have a day where I can sleep past 7:30 (because that really doesn't happen during the week). When I get home at 10pm, I'm dead tired, but in the process of getting ready for bed, preparing books for the next day, even eating the dinner I skipped earlier, I wake back up.

I need suggestions for speedy relaxation at night! (Not that more than one person will make a suggestion).

Knitting classes star in a week and a half, and I am extremely stoked (Like, tubular man). I hope that in the span of the class, I learn everything I am hoping to, and that it does not move at the pace of its slowest member (which could be me). I already know some of the basics like casting on, kniting, purling, and binding off. I even know how to do ribbing and the stockinette stich (which you can do if you know how to knit and purl).

I hope to learn how to:
1. Increase
2. Decrease
3. Cable
4. Seam
5. Tubular cast on and working with it
6. Work with multiple strands of yarn-just striping, or even something as complicated as fair isle, but I think that is a little too hopeful for a once a week for six weeks class.

I really like that linked mitten pattern, and I might buy it eventually. Probably have to sooner rather than later because she just moved her regular blog, and this one might not stay up forever. It's just a little expensive for a mitten pattern, and one that I won't be able to do right away. It also goes through the evil which is paypal, a system I have NEVER gotten to successfully work for me.

Decisions, decisions.

Well, I had better stop shirking and get down to actual work, I do have a 20-minute presentation in two weeks exactly to prepare for (and we all know how much I love to talk in front of an audience even for five minutes), and a paper due the same day.

Have I rambled enough? Probably more than I needed to.

Keep your eyes open for my knitular progress, starting in a week and a half. It will be documented photographically and with any amusing little bits I can think to add.

There, that was just enough ramble.

Monday, September 17, 2007


I am super tired, but I feel obligated to update the blog. I have worked on a few knitting projects since I last posted, so I wanted to show everyone.

First, finished green scarf (my very first finished knitting project):

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Second, scarf started out of the same kind of yarn and same amount of stitches:

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Next, I finished a glove, and it was my first attempt at purling, and I did okay, but messed up the rows. I restarted on my freakin awesome bamboo needles:

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Finally, a small portion of my yarn stash. The reddish....stuff will be my mom's Christmas gift eventually, and the charcoal cotton will be gloves, I hope. It will be my first time working with cotton, so I'm not sure if I will need to take any special precautions, like wearing headgear and goggles, to work with it.

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I might just wear goggles for fun.

Classes are going okay, I'm just extremely busy reading. In fact, I have a few hundred pages to get done today. I'll go to the grocery store and get some required supplies (ice cream, bubble bath, coffee, SPIDER KILLER, etc.), and then start in on the reading.


This is how we roll.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


I had a good day. Wednesdays are always good. There are no regular classes in the day hours, so there is always parking on campus, and I have Shakespeare, which I always enjoy. However, the end of the day has left a little to be desired.

Class lets out about ten minutes late. Okay, no big deal, in a three hour class, what is ten minutes? Time is a curvy, not linear, right? I can justify that. Well, as I walked out to my car, I realized how desperately I needed to pee. Instead of walking all the way back to a building, I decided to tough out the 40 minutes it would take to drive home so I could luxuriate with my Charmin.

Forty minutes later, I sat in the Mixing Bowl, contemplating how difficult it would be to get a stain out of these jeans, or, if people would be completely perplexed if I opened my door and walked to the curb from the middle and...well, you can figure it out.

Twenty minutes later, I tried to distract myself from extreme discomfort to figure out why it was that a five-lane highway, in which everyone is trying to get on 95, and get to the other side of the road than the side they are on, why exactly it was they decided to close the two left lanes in the same place that the right lane was ending. I did not have time to wonder however, because finally, I was free, have traversed those two excruciating miles.

The rest is really a blur as headlights in my rearview mirror as I raced my way home, finally reaching it, an hour and a half after I left Marymount.

Sweet, sweet Charmin.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


It's decided. When I am filthy rich and working at some fantastic job where I can afford a new car, I'm getting a Mini.

Some of you may scoff, but dammit, I'm just tired of not fitting into parking spaces. Or better yet, fitting in the space, but having to crawl out via my sunroof. The Mini can weave in and out of traffic, occasionally known to even take flight.

So watch out in the future my fellow drivers. I will be that one in the apparently full parking lot, when suddenly, you say a gap, speeding to pull in, only to realize it is a Mini, pulled up too far.

My Mini desire stems from having to spend twenty minutes looking for a parking space on campus today, before giving up, driving to their separate lot two miles away, and then being passed TWICE for pick up by the university shuttle. I went in early (an hour) today to get some extra time reading. By the time I got to campus, I was late.

Yarny images coming soon. I figured out how to cast off and finished that scarf. Hallooh, hallay. Also solved the problem of the theater performances. Professor was super cool. Said only one would have to be live, the rest can be movie form.


Sometimes, as part of the graduate experience, I guess you have no choice but to feel that anything you ever thought before and think now, is absolutely foolish, and be told so.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Databases are henceforth banned.

Whew, am I tired. I need to set up some new sort of reading schedule, because there is no way I can get all of this stuff done in one day (not that I was trying...before you start to scold). There are just two dozen things to keep up with at once. I have my assistantship work (and individually entering names into a database which I had to build is extremely tedious and time-consuming PLUS working on the Department website PLUS the Arts and Sciences College Comp Journal).

This on top of homework, in addition to wondering how I am going to swing the $50 ticket each to go see three live Shakespeare performances is a little nerve wracking. I know my parents will give me the money if I ask, but it seems a little outrageous that the professor expects us to do this. I guess she expects we all live in Arlington and don't have to commute 50 minutes to get there and into D.C. (not that I would drive into D.C., I haven't gone off the deep end yet). That we can get to small local theaters easier than the Folger one. Fortunately some of my fellow assistants have offered to go with me, so that will help.

I don't meant to rant. She's a good teacher. If it was maybe two performances instead of three, I wouldn't have such problems. In any case, life outside of class is okay. I'm almost done knitting the green scarf, just need to figure out how to cast off. I'd post a picture, but I'm just not feeling up to it.

I start tutoring Latin on Thursday, for money. I get to work with something I enjoy, and my student is this really great woman.

I guess I will finish writing my response paper now. Then-sleep.

RIP Luciano Pavarotti, the world was your opera.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Macbeth knits in a grammatical sort of way.

I have been working through some homework today, and although I'm not finished, I feel like I've gotten a lot done. One Phillip Roth book finished, halfway through Macbeth, and a chapter and a half from a Syntax textbook complete. I even mapped out some ideas for my response to Macbeth.

I'm having some trouble evaluating Macbeth's hamartia because even though most classes teach it as a tragic flaw, it really isn't translated that way. And I think that what the character of a tragedy suffers from isn't really a tragic flaw in most cases. Hamlet especially. Macbeth is a bit trickier. His ambitions are a flaw, but is it really more of an "ethical fault or infirmity of character" like Bywater indicates? Is what Macbeth does truly deliberate? Is there free will involved, or is it "fated" that he murders Duncan? Such is the life of a graduate student I suppose, facing those "big" questions of life.

Phillip Roth didn't leave me with many questions except for maybe how he might be focusing more on an everyman than on the Jewish part of that character. Syntax is...well, about as exciting to read as it sounds. I'm looking forward to being able to take some Phonology classes.

Onward though! I took some time to break back into knitting today when I needed some time to contemplate Macbeth and the result was this:

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It's a nice shade of green, but I don't think you can really tell in the picture. I was surprised how easily it came back to me. I still don't know how to finish a knit project, but I'll worry about that when I come to it. Also, it is kinda cool that my knitting needles could double for small swords.

Anyway, still have more reading to do, and I wanted to write up my Macbeth response tonight, so I'm off!

Friday, August 31, 2007

Good Morning

A bit early, a puppy woke me up this morning with his barking, but with a face like his, how can I be angry? He's falling asleep as he's chewing on a toy. It's adorable.

Now, as for the week. The assistantship is going well. I'm still working on the same projects previously mentioned, and am trying to do some reading in the process. I have met a few new people, and they have all been kind. Two of the new friends I have made are international students, one now permanently living in the U.S., and one hoping to stay permanently.

My classes and professors all seem nice, but each with a different approach. The Phillip Roth wants a very intimiate setting, and a lot of conversation and questions (there are only six of us in the class). The Shakespeare teacher seemed a bit intimidating, but I don't think the class will be bad. We are required to attend at least three live performances. I've talked with my new friends, and I think we are all going to go to the Shakespeare theater in D.C. and watch it together. Going would only bother me if I had to go alone (although my super cool roommate would probably go with me).

Applied Grammar does not sound like an exciting class, but the professor is witty and uses fun examples to keep the class from becoming nap time. A lot of the information has been redundant from my last Syntax class, so huzzah.

I am currently sitting on the couch in the living room, with my feet propped up on the coffee table. Captain (the dog) in all of his adorable cunning, has lain down in the space underneath my legs. It melts the heart, and makes it extremely difficult to stand up. Oh, he's a sneaky little Border Collie, but again, how can you not love a face like his? I'd post a picture, but technically he's not my dog, Sara is his mom, and I'm the auntie. Auntie Em. Yea.

Grandma is South Carolina had her surgery, and she seems to be doing okay. My other grandma recently broke bones in both her hands and now they are both in hard casts. My Pop is going nuts taking care of her, answering the million phone calls, because she can't really hold a phone right now, and doing everything for her. I expect her to make him take up where she left in her knitting.

Not really...

Not sure what else to say, I'm not writing very well today, so I might postpone any commentary until tomorrow. I'm also going to try some knitting this weekend, and I might post the results if they are not too horrendous.

I would also like everyone (being the one or two people that acutally read this) to check out The Pyrates Royale, who play, you can guess, Pirate music. It leans towards folk music though. I really enjoy their version of The Old Dun Cow. You can sample their newest cd here.

Chris Brown is on tv, so I leave you now to change the channel. I don't hold it against him because he is from Tappahannock, it's just if I watch him any longer, my brain will melt out of my ears.

What a world, what a world.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Old Dun Cow

Short post tonight, I am super tired after all the driving and long days. But I believe I will get the 30-credit thesis option I was hoping for!

I also just wanted to say Happy Birthday to Scott, and thanks to all those who have been sending Threadless points my way.

For all of you, I dedicate this old Irish Drinking Song (it's a lot of fun to hear it sung; found here):

Some friends and I in a public house
Was playing a game of chance one night
When into the pub a fireman ran His face all a chalky white.
"What's up", says Brown, "Have you seen a ghost,
Or have you seen your Aunt Mariah?"
"Me Aunt Mariah be buggered!", says he,
"The bleedin' pub's on fire!"

And there was Brown upside down
Lappin'' up the whiskey on the floor.
"Booze, booze!" The firemen cried
As they came knockin' on the door (clap clap)
Oh don't let 'em in till it's all drunk up
And somebody shouted MacIntyre! MACINTYRE!
And we all got blue-blind paralytic drunk
When the Old Dun Cow caught fire.

"Oh well," says Brown, "What a bit of luck.
Everybody follow me. And it's down to the cellar
If the fire's not there
Then we'll have a grand old spree."
So we went on down after good old Brown
The booze we could not miss
And we hadn't been there ten minutes or more
Till we were quite pissed.

Then, Smith walked over to the port wine tub
And gave it just a few hard knocks (clap clap)
Started takin' off his pantaloons
Likewise his shoes and socks.
"Hold on, " says Brown, "that ain't allowed
Ya cannot do that thing here.
Don't go washin' trousers in the port wine tub
When we got Guinness beer."

Then there came from the old back door
The Vicar of the local church.
And when he saw our drunken ways,
He began to scream and curse."
Ah, you drunken sods! You heathen clods!
You've taken to a drunken spree!
You drank up all the Benedictine wine
And you didn't save a drop for me!"

And then there came a mighty crash
Half the bloody roof caved in.
We were almost drowned in the firemen's hose
But still we were gonna stay.
So we got some tacks and some old wet sacks
And we nailed ourselves inside
And we sat drinking the finest Rum
Till we were bleary-eyed.

Later that night, when the fire was out
We came up from the cellar below.
Our pub was burned. Our booze was drunk.
Our heads was hanging low.
"Oh look", says Brown with a look quite queer.
Seems something raised his ire.
"Now we gotta get down to Murphy's Pub,
It closes on the hour!"


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Penny Arcade

I'm not sure how many of you read Penny Arcade, but Wired Magazine just did an article on the creators, and it's good reading. Very funny:

I'm going to leave for class and office hours soon (haven't gotten much homework done-bad me), but I'm a little worried about the kind of degree I'm getting.

The one I want, 30-credits, requires me to be proficient in one foreign language. So does Latin count? Am I actually proficient? I hope they just take that I have completed the minor, and not make me take a test, because I will FAIL.

Anyway, need to do some reading before class. Got about 800 pages of reading due for next week.

The sky is falling.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

When you can't sleep, Blog.

Today was the first day I had class and assistantship hours. I am a little overwhelmed, but I think that is to be expected. Mainly, I am exhausted, but so much so that I apparently cannot sleep.

It might have been the terror which is driving to Marymount. From I95 to I395 is bad enough, but Glebe Road and trying to find a parking spot is an absolute nightmare. And the parking spots are big enough to hold cars, but not to open the car doors. Thank God I have a sun roof I can climb out of.

The assistantship seems okay. I don't mind helping professors with professorly duties (it actually seems fun, and it is good experience); however, I am helping the director of the Literature program, and with nonprofessorly duties. She gave me a list of four things to work on including helping to redesign the English Department website (even writing parts of it), keeping up the department bulletin boards, creating an alumni database, and updating contact information for the English department faculty.

I don't really have a problem with the tasks themselves, but I've worked with professors before, and that is familiar. Web design, creating databases? That's a whole new puzzle. Well, at least I only have to dedicate ten hours a week to this work. Also, if anyone has suggestions for the sort of thing you would like to see on an English Department website (besides the standard information), let me know.

Class itself was good. It is all on Phillip Roth. I enjoyed the discussion in class, but I think that three-hour long classes should include mandatory nap and snack time. Most of the professors actually do provide a rest period to snack during, but what I'm really lobbying for is that nap time. We can get mats like in kindergarten, lay them out in the floor, turn out the lights, and dream of Phillip Roth.

It's just a suggestion.

I did get bored while I was holding office hours for FOUR hours today and did a little crochet. It's just a single crochet. I guess it is going to be a scarf, because it was the only thing I knew how to start off the top of my head. The yarn is just a Lion Brand Worsted weight:

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I think I'll try this whole sleep thing again. More office hours and a Shakespeare class tomorrow. Can't wait till Friday comes...

Monday, August 27, 2007

DHL deliver packages from Hell.

Today, after a few phone calls, I finally received my laptop via DHL delivery. I wish the great UPS knight would come and slay the DHL beast, because the guy who delivered to me today was a bastard. He faked out the delivery at 4:25, saying that an attempt was made, although, I sitting eagerly beside the door, never heard so much as a rapping at my door.

I decided to call the DHL hotline, and in a firm and slightly angry voice, I demanded to know where my package was and why it was not delivered. The representative said she would contact the local DHL office so I could pick up my package and that they could explain things to me. About twenty minutes later I got a phone call. The woman said that the driver would not return until 7:45, and they close at 8pm, but I was welcome to come pick up my package. When I asked about the failed delivery, and wanting to speak to a supervisor, she said I would need to do that in person.

Another twenty minutes pass, and a yellow van pulls into my parking lot. Someone tipped off the DHL man. Needless to say, despite his rudeness and mistreatment of my box, I got my package.

Please, save yourself the hassle, and never never use DHL.

On to happier topics. I start classes tomorrow along with my hours for my graduate assistantship (including a meeting with the Dean of my college). I'm scared as hell about driving there, and finding a parking spot. I think they intentionally made 300 less parking spots than they needed.

Also, I finished the ugly pink scarf I was working on. I used the whole skein to avoid having to see it again:

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I was itching to start on something else, so I began a small scarf for one of my nieces in a purple homespun. It's coming out pretty well so far (although I can't take a nonblurry photo to save my life):

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I think that is all for today. I will post again soon and give some updates about the first day of graduate school. (Eek!)

ALSO: Threadless is having a sale for $10 a shirt, help me out by clicking the link on the side if you decide to buy a shirt, or by clicking the ad links at the bottom. Support my graduate studentness!

Sunday, August 26, 2007


This is my second post for the day, but don't get accustomed to it.

I started working on a scarf today (the weird pink one) and I'm not sure how I'm liking the results. The Homespun is hard to work with because I keep splitting the yarn, but I'm using the largest gauge hook I have and am counting stitches.

I think the color is sabotaging me. Not only is pink a vile and revolting color (even the hints of orange can't redeem it), but it also shows every single flipping mistake I've made. This is why I have decided to give the scarf as a gift for my sister-in-law. I don't really know her that well, but also don't like her that much. She's also one of those girly girls who would actually wear a pink scarf.

Anyway, here is the scarf I've worked up so far. It's about two feet long right now. If I have any leftover from the sis-in-law's scarf, I'm going to drag out the dusty knitting needles and make nice small ones for my nieces. They look adorable in scarves.

Now, picture!

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I'm getting to be a pro at this Photobucket thing. Next thing you know I will be composing entirely in html or binary. I'd prefer Latin, but it doesn't translate as well to the computers. Something about the Romance languages leaves my PC all snarky.

This is mostly just for me

I completed my first hat. I also made my first attempt at using photobucket.
The hat is a combo of double and single crochet, and it is a pattern (sorta) from Stitch n' Bitch: The Happy Hooker by Debbie Stoller. I used a worsted weight wool/acrylic blend by Pattons. The pattern is close, but I made a few mistakes, which I've tried to hide because I didn't want to frog it (again).
Anyway, pictures!

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My next project will probably be a gift for my sister-in-law eventually. I have some Homespun pinkish yarn, and I really don't know what I was thinking when I bought it. I blame poor lighting. I'm just working it up in a double crochet. I wanted to try a few easy scarves before I moved on to my Harry Potter scarves. I plan on doing a Ravenclaw (movie colors) and Gryffindor scarf.

I went to a real yarn store for the first time yesterday, and I was a bit overwhelmed and underfunded. Eventually I will have the money to be a complete yarn snob. And eventually I will be able to complete projects so well that I will not need to pull them out two or three times in the creation process.

On a heavier note, I start my graduate classes Tuesday, and I'm so nervous that if I think about it too hard, I set my asthma off.

Well, off to work on my weird pink scarf.